Change and loss

17 days and counting.  That is the official countdown for my dear friend and husband to leave for Africa.  They are not going for a vacation or a trip, they are moving there because God has called them to touch the children of Africa with His love.  Children who are abandoned, orphaned and have seen more atrocities in their young life then we have in our entire lifetime.  That is their lion that they are chasing.  While I can not think of a more important job in the Kingdom than to offer one of these little ones a drink of water or a touch of compassion in the name of Jesus…it still feels like a loss.  I feel like I am losing my friend and I am sure that they are feeling loss as well.  Leaving grown children, family, friends and loved ones behind to travel to another country.  As excited as a I am for them if I think about it to much, I get a big lump in my throat.  Why is change always like that?  Why does it feel like you are losing something even though the change might be good?  Ecclesiastes says that there is a time for everything.  I do not like that very much.  It does not even sound good to me but I know that is part of the Christian walk we are on.  If we are following Christ and chasing lions then change is inevitable and loss will be a part of that.  We can not move to the next season that God has for us and still hang onto the old one.  Many times in my own life change and moving from one season to the next has always been bittersweet and always involved loss.  Stepping down from a home school group that God and I had birthed together was like giving one of my own children away.  But I would not have traded the journey.  I look at all that God has done in and through me during that time and I am amazed.  Had I decided to hang onto to that season, I would have missed it.  I think of all the letters that the Apostle Paul wrote back to churches.  Almost all of them start with how much he misses them and how much he hopes to get back to them soon.  What if Paul had decided that he did not want to leave a place where he had made friends and co-workers in the gospel?  Then the gospel would not have spread nearly as effectively as it was.  He probably gets the most credit for the spreading of the gospel than anyone else in Scripture and yet he had to endure loss to follow that calling.  Years ago, we had some blueberry plants.  The first year, you have to pluck all the blossoms off so that the plant can put all of its energy into growing.  Do you know how hard that was?  That just about killed us!  We might have even had to do it for the second year but once the harvest came, it was abundant.  I think that is what change is about.  Making a change in the right direction will produce an abundant harvest no matter the loss that was incurred in the process. 

I want to thank all of you who have read and/or posted comments.  Your graciousness and encouragement has overwhelmed me!  Bless you all!

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Chasing the Lion

I read a book recently called In A Pit with A Lion on a Snowy Day.  It was one of those books that so challenged my life and convicted me that when I was finished reading it, I felt like I needed to read it again because I just knew that I had missed some things.  The premise of the book is that being a Christ follower is not about playing it safe, it is about taking risks.  To many of us have fallen into a Christian walk of never taking risks and therefore never failing.  This is where I find myself.  While most of the people who know me would say that I am definitely a risk taker, I would not agree.  Years ago, it was a risk for me to pray over someone or to speak out loud the words God had given me for someone.  Not anymore.  While I can not say that I never have hesitancy in this, it is a comfortable place that God and I share where we work together.  But there are risks that He is asking me to take.  I was listening to the first part in a five week sermon series on this book and the question the pastor left us with was this, “What lion are you chasing?”  He also let us know that in Hebrews it says that “without faith, it is impossible to believe God.”  Then he stated, “If you are not chasing lions, you are not pleasing God.  To chase a lion takes faith.”  That question has challenged and convicted me for three days.  So..I asked God “What is the lion that I am supposed to be chasing?”  While I did not get a definite answer, I did get that I am to start putting myself out there, be bold, speak up, start writing and develop my lion chasing skills.  So this blog is my first step in chasing the lion.  It might not look like much but I know that I have definitely picked up my spear and started to run after that lion.  I do not know where it will end up but I know this, I will not regret the chase.

What lion are you supposed to be chasing?